Wednesday, June 20, 2012

A thought for the day...

Why don't incompetent people realize they're incompetent? It's a great question posed by Stephen Fry on an episode of QI I watched recently. The answer? The knowledge required to determine if someone is incompetent is the same as the knowledge required to be competent. So the people who are incompetent don't have the skills to determine they are incompetent.

Quite interesting, eh?

Click here for the QI channel on YouTube to enjoy some clips from the earlier episodes. I'm definitely having a marathon of QI this summer! 

And wow, you can tell I'm home from work this week, eh? 


Mychelle said...

I used to do a lot of theatre and as I walked off stage one night I asked my director if I would ever feel good about my performance. He said "a bad actor walks off stage and says 'that was great.' A good actor walks off stage and say 'not bad, but I could do better'." I think that applies here as well. :)

Unknown said...

Plato says: Man always chooses the good. The problem is, Man has no idea what the good is. Same idea. The more i travel on my inner journey, the more i have compassion for mankind.
On a side note, why is it that the mail I get in the subscription says the date is January 2011?
Everyday, i get your mail, Susan, thank you.

Nancy Liedel said...

A conundrum is a beautiful thing.

Anonymous said...

Hi Susan,

You might be interested in the Dunning-Kruger Effect.
The Wikipedia page on it is actually quite good.

Also, my messages still aren't getting through a lot of the time :(


Bunny said...

I *love* QI! It's my favorite quiz show ever. I can quite happily watch the older episodes many times over.

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi everyone! I definitely feel like your good actor, Mychelle! I'm always finding where I can improve what I'm doing - I wonder if I need more time to look at what I'm doing right? Hmm...

Hi Grace! The Dunning-Kruger effect is interesting! It's "a cognitive bias in which unskilled individuals suffer from illusory superiority, mistakenly rating their ability much higher than average. This bias is attributed to a metacognitive inability of the unskilled to recognize their mistakes." Gives one something to think about, eh?

I don't know why your last two comments ended up in spam. I definitely haven't flagged you as spam, but I do check the bin regularly now to make sure that if you end up there, you get back out!

I posted this idea for two reasons - because I love QI and Stephen Fry, and because I'm being inundated by newbies who seem to be unable to resist tearing me the proverbial new one because I'm clearly not as intelligent or well versed in making bath & body products as they are. I find their enthusiasm wonderful, but I grow tired of hearing things like "I'll teach you what 'chemical free' means" or "how dare you tell African haired women how to prepare their hair"! The irony of all of this - they won't be the ones who get the message. But I had to get it off my chest!

Anonymous said...

Hi Susan,

Glad you found it quite interesting. I didn’t want to post a link myself as I thought the Blogger would definitely mark me as spam if I did.

Thanks for checking your spam for me, and sorry about my “science isn’t a belief system” rant – I don’t have your saint-like patience with Antiscience people.

I think I have a hypothesis as to why the Blogger has decided I’m a spammer:
To quote the brilliant scientist Prof. H Farnsworth, “As Deepak Chopra taught us, quantum physics means anything can happen at any time for no reason.”
Based on the future acceptance of Chopra’s ideas, I have concluded that the Blogger has developed sentience and hates me.

To test this I propose: I need to inundate your account with 1000 spam messages per day from my personal computer. If the Blogger downloads itself into a robot body and hunts me down, I’ll know I was right.
However, I think, for both our sakes, its best left as a thought experiment.

Best wishes,